забыть, забывать, позабыть

Go-Moskva-go

Member
эстонский
Hi!

As far as I know the perfective aspect counterpart for "to forget" in Russian is забыть (the imperfective
verb being забывать). However, I've also come across the verb позабыть. I figured, позабыть
could be another acceptable perfective counterpart for "to forget", yet in all the dictionaries I have
tried to look for it, I've found nothing. Dictionaries seem to consider забыть the only
acceptable perfective counterpart for забывать.

Could someone kindly shed some light on this matter? Are забыть and позабыть, in fact, synonymous?

PS. I've noticed a similar phenomenon with the perfective counterpart of встречать, which, as far
as I know, should be встретить. However, I keep coming across повстречать. Is повстречать
also synonymous with встретить?

Thanks for all answers! :)
 
  • Maroseika

    Moderator
    Russian
    Yes, забыть and позабыть (as well as another perfective form позабывать) are synonyms, the latter being more colloquial or maybe bookish in some contexts, same as повстречать. Позабывать has additional meaning 'to forget gradually'.
    As for the dictionaries, you just should use good ones and you will find there a bit less than everything.
     

    beakman

    Senior Member
    Hi!

    As far as I know the perfective aspect counterpart for "to forget" in Russian is забыть (the imperfective
    verb being забывать). However, I've also come across the verb позабыть. I figured, позабыть
    could be another acceptable perfective counterpart for "to forget", yet in all the dictionaries I have
    tried to look for it, I've found nothing. Dictionaries seem to consider забыть the only
    acceptable perfective counterpart for забывать.

    Could someone kindly shed some light on this matter? Are забыть and позабыть, in fact, synonymous?

    PS. I've noticed a similar phenomenon with the perfective counterpart of встречать, which, as far
    as I know, should be встретить. However, I keep coming across повстречать. Is повстречать
    also synonymous with встретить?

    Thanks for all answers! :)
    Hello, everybody! I just want to add some reflection to this question:
    "забыть" and "позабыть" are synonims, the latter word has a prefix по- . This can be compared to English pair "come to me" and "come up" (they are synonims, aren't they?). In Russian instead of a preposition a prefix is added (sometimes it can produce the change in meaning, but not always).
    Best regards,
    Beakman
     

    grinski

    Senior Member
    Russian
    Я читала стихи, позавыв обо всём на свете is more elated than забыв обо всём на свете. I was reading poems and everything in the world was forgotten.

    Я читала стихи, забывая обо всём на свете.
    Here the process of forgetting is underlined. I continued reading and was forgetting everything in the world with each line.
     

    grinski

    Senior Member
    Russian
    Is повстречать also synonymous with встретить?
    Мне нужно встретить друга в аэропорту.:tick:
    Мне нужно повстречать друга в аэропорту.:cross:
    повстречать is to meet by chance, occasionally.
     

    beakman

    Senior Member
    I would say that "позавыв" is better to compare to "забыв " (because of the same aspect) and the former is much more elated in this context. It is possible that in such pairs the verb which has the prefix carries more emphasis or definiteness...Do you agree?
     
    Last edited:

    beakman

    Senior Member
    Well, встретить and повстречать are near-synonyms (there are very few absolute and propositional synonyms). In this particular case it's impossible to express the same meaning using alternatively any of them. But you will agree with me that in the following example it is possible: Забудь, кем ты был or позабудь, кем ты был. I think that позабудь adds a resolutive nuance to the same meaning and aspect. Do you agree?
     
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